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Sarawak BN pours cold water on PR Sarawak bid - malaysiakini

From Malaysia Today:

(The Borneo Post) - KUCHING: Pakatan Rakyat (Pakatan) cannot take over the state government from the Barisan Nasional even after its leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, who is Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) advisor, takes over the state PKR leadership.

Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Dr George Chan yesterday said Pakatan could not win the state election because Anwar's sincerity in helping Sarawak was doubtful.

Anwar had never shown sufficient interest in the people's welfare or even development in the state, said Dr Chan, who is also Sarawak United People's Party (Supp) president.

"When Anwar was the deputy prime minister, did he really care about Sarawak? Can Anwar love Sarawak more than Ng, a Sarawakian?" he quipped, referring to Padungan assemblyman Dominique Ng whom PKR has recently ousted to allow Anwar to become Sarawak PKR liaison chief.

Besides, Dr Chan said a Sarawakian like Ng would understand the needs of the state and its people better than an outsider like Anwar.

Dr Chan said: "I would be very angry with Anwar if I were Ng for taking over the party's state leadership."

He said the latest move by PKR also gave people the impression that Sarawakians could not lead, apart from undermining Ng's leadership quality, ability and capability.

Dr Chan said he believed Sarawakians in general would not support PKR even after the so-called change of PKR state leadership as the party was Peninsular Malaysia-based, and could not do much improvement for Sarawak.

He was commenting on a news portal Malaysiakini report over the matter thereby confirming suspicion over Ng's leadership style and Anwar's apparent greed for power.

As of yesterday, Ng could not be contacted for his comment.

Anwar has also been appointed by PKR as state liaison chief of PKR Sabah.

PKR information chief Chua Tian Chong alias Tian Chua said the move was part of the opposition's political strategies to wrest the two states from the BN.

He said the move was also a sort of a morale booster for their supporters in the two states.

The Batu MP said they would have to re-formulate leadership structure in Sarawak so that they could accommodate Ng, the former state liaison chief.

Despite insider sources suggesting that PKR was having problems with the way Ng conducted things in the party, Tian Chua said the decision was not personal.

"The move is a political strategy because Anwar is accepted by the people regardless of race and religion. His appointment will be a morale booster," he said.

Clarifying a public query, he said the move did not mean that Anwar was harbouring the hope of becoming chief minister of Sarawak or even Sabah because their respective state constitutions did not allow this in the first place.

"When the time comes, we would prefer a Sarawakian to become chief minister of Sarawak," he added.

PKR deputy state liaison chief Nicholas Bawin Anggat said change in leadership would be clearer after a PKR dinner on Jan 9 here.

"As of now Anwar has been appointed state liaison chief," he said, while avoiding issues surrounding Ng's whereabouts.

Bawin said he shared similar sentiments as that of Tian Chua in regards to the latest move by their party because it was lauded by the majority of PKR supporters in Sarawak.

"If our aim is to wrest Sarawak from the BN, the party leadership needs to change for the better first," he said.

Reacting to this latest development, SUPP newly elected Youth chief Sih Hua Tong said he took the news with 'a pinch of salt'.

He said he believed that Sarawakians would know better when it came to understanding the needs of fellow Sarawakians.

"How much does he (Anwar) know about Sarawak and the people's needs and problems? A Sarawakian knows better," he said.

"But since it is their party matter, I do not want to comment so much about it. Just that Anwar's appointment gives the impression that a Sarawakian cannot lead or not given a chance to lead in the future," he said.

Sih said Anwar's latest appointment would not be a threat to the state BN because past promises of the opposition pact leader had turned to nothing.

He cited the big hoo-ha about Anwar's claims that PR would take over the government at federal level on Sept 16 due to defection of several BN MPs, which did not happen.

"I prefer to focus on the people's needs and problems rather than be bothered by this hoo-ha," he added.

Chief political secretary to the Chief Minister, Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah told The Borneo Post's sister paper Utusan Borneo that he could not comment on the matter just yet.

Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB) secretary-general Dr Stephen Rundi also told UB that he could not make any comment since he had not received any information (or instruction) about Anwar's latest strategy from PBB headquarters here.

Malaysiakini reported on Dec 24 that PKR Supreme Council has appointed Anwar as the party's liaison chief for Sabah and Sarawak.

Anwar's appointment was a show of the party's commitment towards Sabah and Sarawak, which PKR claimed had been marginalised by the federal government, the news portal said. Azizah said the party's supreme council decided on the new line-up of Sarawak and Sabah PKR on Dec 18.